Supporting the significant other in women undergoing abortion

Allyson Lipp

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Abortion remains an ethical, legal and professional challenge to nurses. In the last decade there have been many innovations in abortion care and nurses have developed woman-centred, responsive services. Despite this progress, the needs of significant others - particularly partners attending with women - have yet to be fully met. A significant other is encouraged to stay with the woman during certain parts of the procedure if it is a surgical abortion, or may remain with the woman continuously during a medical abortion. There are benefits in encouraging significant others to stay with the woman, including the provision of additional support during the procedure as well as health promotion opportunities. The nurse has a vital function in assisting them in their role, as it is essential that significant others are adequately prepared and supported throughout. Providing they are managed proactively, involving significant others in supporting the woman undergoing abortion is commended.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1232 - 1236
Number of pages4
JournalBritish Journal of Nursing
Issue number19
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2008


  • abortion
  • nurse's role
  • significant other
  • termination of pregnancy
  • partners
  • support


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